Mary Smith is an independent board member, former CEO of a $6 billion national healthcare organization and C-suite executive with 25+ years of business experience. Mary currently serves on the board of PTC Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ: PTCT), a global biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery, development and commercialization of clinically differentiated medicines that provide benefits to patients with rare disorders. She also serves on the board of HAI Group, a leading member- owned property-casualty insurance company for the affordable housing industry. She brings a breadth of experience in governance, technology, compliance, human resources, government affairs, accounting, audit oversight, and regulatory experience. Her industry experience includes highly regulated areas such as financial services, insurance, and healthcare.
Mary is currently Vice Chair at the VENG Group where she consults on business development, strategy, healthcare, and corporate governance. She concurrently serves as a Senior Fellow at Freedman Consulting LLC. Until 2017, Mary was the CEO of the Indian Health Service, a $6 billion national healthcare system serving over 2.2 million persons that included 26 hospitals and over 50 clinics. In this role, she reported directly to the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services, Sylvia Mathews Burwell, and she oversaw the development of an overarching operational framework that utilized data analytics to improve services, allocate resources, and develop the workforce. She also testified before the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee and the U.S. House Natural Resource Committee regularly.
After earning a degree in mathematics and computer science, Mary started her career in technology at Walgreens and Northern Trust. In these positions, she worked with business leaders to address technology needs, attract customers, and develop strategy.
She previously served in a senior role at Tyco International (US) Inc. (NYSE: TYC), a $40 billion public company, where she managed one of the most high-profile corporate governance and accounting matters in the country. At Tyco, Mary managed a $60 million budget and regularly advised the board and senior executives on corporate governance matters and compliance, overseeing a $3 billion settlement. She also served as Special Counsel & Estate Trust Officer at the Office of Special Deputy Receiver in Chicago, Illinois where she managed and advised on M&A for over 20 insurance companies with approximately $1.5 billion in assets.
Mary has also served on the senior team of the Civil Division at the United States Department of Justice and was General Counsel at the Illinois Department of Insurance and member of senior management, overseeing legal and compliance functions. Earlier in her career, Mary served in the Clinton White House as Associate Counsel to the President and Associate Director of Policy Planning in the Domestic Policy Council. From 2018-2020, she was also a member of the National Policy and Innovation Council for WellCare (NYSE: WCG) (now Centene) which advised the C-suite on strategic matters.
Mary is a NACD Board Leadership Fellow and has attained the NACD Directorship Certification® and the CERT Certificate in Cybersecurity Oversight from Carnegie Mellon and NACD. Mary is a board member of the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago. She is Audit Committee Chair and a member of the Nominating and Governance Committee of the National Women’s History Museum.
Mary is an enrolled member of the Cherokee Nation and is President-Elect Nominee of the American Bar Association. She is also the Founder and Board Chair of the Caroline and Ora Smith Foundation the only national organization that promotes Native American girls in the STEM fields. She is a long-time member and previous President and board member of the National Native American Bar Association.